Telewest has followed the recent NTL upgrade news, with its own, and that is that customers currently on 2Mbps or 4Mbps services will be upgraded to a 10Mbps service (costing £35/month). The current 0.5Mbps service will be increased to 2Mbps (£17.99/month), and the 1Mbps service to 4Mbps (£25/month). More details of the upgrades are at www.blueyonder.co.uk/evenfaster.
The service is to remain free of usage limitations, which many will view as a brave move when allowing users upto 10Mbps. Upgrades are expected to start rolling out from September onwards, and are expected to complete in early 2006.
The upstream speeds are something of a disappointment, especially at a time when even the average broadband user is making more use of the upstream, for example uploading digital photos to online photo albums. The 2Mbps service will have a 256kbps upstream, which is not too bad, but the premium 10Mbps service is going to have a only marginally better 384kbps. We hope that NTL will see that the demand for upstream bandwidth by average users is increasing, and give a better upstream on its 10Mbps product.
The above is an extract from the press release, we feel it is worth pointing out that while Telewest will be marketing a 2Mbps service as its minimum speed, what Eric Tveter has said above is not a guarantee that users will see 2Mbps as a minimum for downloads. If the experience of other countries is anything to judge by, as the downstream speeds increase, the variation in speeds due to congestion at peak times will become larger than the majority of people have experienced with the slower 0.5Mbps services.
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